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ENTERTAINMENT:Dia Mirza has said that the reason middle-aged actors are cast opposite teenage female actors in films is because they want to extend their own shelf life

Actor Dia Mirza has said that it is ‘unfortunate’ to see older men play characters much younger than themselves. She said that the industry favours the idea of youthful beauty, and that Neena Gupta is an ‘aberration’.

In an interview, Dia said that it is ‘bizarre’ to observe a middle-aged actor cast opposite a teenage counterpart. But this happens, she said, because the industry is male-dominated.

Dia told ETimes, “The unfortunate truth of the matter is that stories are not written for the female older characters as much as the male ones. It is even more unfortunate to see an older man playing younger parts. The idea of beauty is always associated with youthfulness. I think that is why there is a large interest in consuming younger faces.”

She continued, “An aberration to this would be an actress like Neena Gupta ji. She literally has said it out loud more than once, ‘I am an actor. I love my job. Please cast me.’ Thankfully, some interesting filmmakers decided to cast her in lead parts that were defeating her age. But there are a lot of actresses in their middle age who are struggling and aren’t being cast because no stories are being written for them.”

Dia added, “The industry is male-dominated. Older men like to be cast opposite younger women to extend their own shelf life. It is bizarre that a 50 plus something actor is acting opposite a 19-year-old actress.”
Dia, who transitioned from being a beauty queen to an actor, said in an earlier interview that her looks have gotten in the way of her bagging certain roles. “I think any stereotype and pre conceived notions are not good. The way I look has been a disadvantage for me in my acting profession many a times. I have lost a job and not been cast in a part because I look too good.

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